This column often discusses bank charges all tips are welcome. Manjit Sokhal, mentioned in the supermarket-shopping story, also passed on her tip. She belongs to the Federation of Small Businesses, paying a £150 membership fee a year. "They offered a good deal with Co-op Bank," she says. "The first £4K a month is free, then they charge 40p per £100 which is quite good. And for the membership fee you get free legal help if you need it."

A good recommendation on two fronts. I know some 'federations' are not up to scratch, according to readers, but this federation is actually a non-affiliated campaigning pressure group for the self-employed and does a lot of good lobbying. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend them either.

Others to consider are the Forum of Private Business and the Association of Convenience Stores. The latter, we at C-Store know, has a fine set of pearly white choppers that it is not afraid of using.

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